“Responding to this message, allows the scammers access to your account, your contacts and your messages,” a spokesman said.
Detective Inspector Derricka Burns of the Specialist Crime Unit advised: “WhatsApp rarely message users via the app. If they do, it is for global announcements, and their messages include a green verified indicator alongside the logo and the account name.
“Also, WhatsApp never asks for your data or verification code and you should never be handing out six-digit PIN numbers to anyone.”
Inspector Burns added: “You can take extra security measures by setting up the two-step verification for your WhatsApp account.
This means even if someone does get hold of your six-digit number, they will still need an extra password to access your account.
“Instructions for setting up two-step verification, is available in the settings area of the app.”